I knew I was going to have to leave Izzie for a full day at nursery soon but it wasn’t supposed to be today. She’s just hit the big 03 and is now entitled to ‘Government funded education sessions’ for 15 hours a week. She started nursery in January and until today it had just been for fun.
She only did 3 hours, 2 mornings a week. I said Goodbye to her, walked out, then someone asked me what she’d like for lunch. Lunch? I was picking her up at 12 wasn’t I? Apparently not. Today was the first day of the Autumn term and this was when her hours increased. I had an email confirming the exact date I’d been told she was supposed to start full time and it wasn’t today.
I’d planned to make a big fuss of Izzie’s first full day at nursery, drum roll before, dancing girls after, you know the deal. Now the whole big event and bigger build up was being snatched away from me. But did I really want to argue with someone who is in custody of my baby over something that’s going to happen in a weeks time anyway? Probably not.
I went back into the room to ask Izzie what she’d like for lunch and to explain she’d be staying the whole day. Worringly she was already involved in a heated altracation with a huge child who’s face was covered in cuts and bruises. Children with a higher than average amount of cuts and bruises irrationally concern me. Its like the fact I don’t like parking next to a car thats covered in dents. Totally unreasonable as the damage could have happened through no fault of the child or car owner. Anyway Izzie was happy to stay all day and even keener to get rid of me, so she could carry on this argument over what seemed to be about a paintbrush.
As I shuffled as slowly as I could get away with out the building, all my Izzie ‘firsts’ came flooding through my mind, first smile, first tooth, first steps, first words but the most prominent memory was my first IVF injection. I’m not overly squeamish but I admit I didn’t relish the thought of injecting myself a couple of times a day for a few months. I would have done anything for a baby though.
I vividly remember being trained on how to administer the IVF drugs. I was sitting in the treatment room, staring at the wall, listening to the very kind nurse tell me how to store the drugs, how to release air bubbles, how to load the syringe. My eyes were fixed on the wall because it was covered with beautiful photos of IVF success stories. There were photos of embryos who had developed into babies and then grown into children. I could see photos of gorgeous children sitting on Santa’s lap or dressed up for the first day of school. I remember thinking “That’s such a long way off”.
Then I heard the fertility nurse say “the worse thing about the injections, is the idea of having to do them and the anticipation before’. I was tempted to say “I’m with you on that one love so could we just speed it up a bit and get going with the practicalities. Otherwise I’m going to totally bottle it and do a runner’. She must have read my mind because then it was time. The syringe was positioned and I felt the needle pierce my skin. And you know what? It wasn’t that bad. There was some discomfort but not the agonising pain I’d anticipated. And the best thing was, it was over and done with. I was a step closer to my dream of a baby.
And now here I am, the other side, desperately wishing the last 3 years hadn’t gone quite so quickly. I open the nursery gate, walk through and can sense it slowly closing behind me. So there’s still time. I can still rush back in and say to the staff, “look this is your mistake, I’m not prepared to leave Izzie until 4pm today, I will pick her up at 12pm as I’d planned” and then I can also pay that big kid with the bigger bruises a visit and tell him that if he ever lays a finger on my little girl I’ll tell his Mum.
I don’t. Instead I hear the gate click close behind me and similar to my first injection, I don’t feel the pain I had anticipated. I feel sad, a little uncomfortable but I’m also overwhelmed with a rush of relief. In a way the nursery have done me a favour. Their admin error meant there had been no short term, nerve racking, build up. Sometimes you’ve just got to face the inevitable.
I understand it is my job to give my 2 girls the confidence to make them feel like they can rule the world and to send them out to learn the skills to enable them to do so. Judging by the amount of back chat and attitude they’re dishing out, I’m a proficient teacher of confidence. Its now time for Izzie to spend more time away from me, to learn more skills, to fight her own battle with the kid with the bruises. Its time for us to move on to the next stage. And knowing its the right thing to do doesn’t make it any easier but knowing its the best way forward, certainly makes it a little more bearable.